During the South Park 20th anniversary panel at San Diego Comic-Con, the possibility of a Pokemon GO-inspired episode was brought up – but it sounds as if there won’t be one.
There are few shows that offer a level of social commentary nearly as well or effectively as South Park. The long-running and animated comedy series is notorious for not pulling any punches when it comes down to making a point, and this formula would seemingly lend itself well to the ongoing craze that is Pokemon GO. Given that the creators of the show, Matt Stone and Trey Parker, have tackled several gaming-themed episodes in the past (with one of the more recent South Park episodes starring YouTuber PewDiePie), many likely thought that such topic would be a no-brainer. Evidently, this is not the case.
During San Diego Comic-Con’s South Park 20th anniversary panel, Trey Parker informed the crowd that him and his team wouldn’t be tackling Pokemon GO in the future. While this may strike some fans of both South Park and Pokemon as a little disappointing, Parker’s rationale behind the decision to pursue other topical issues makes a lot of sense:
“What’s really funny, people keep telling us about this Pokemon GO thing and asking if we’re going to do something on that and I’m like ‘We did, in 1999!'”
Parker is, of course, referring to the popular ‘Chinpokomon’ episode from Season 3 of the series, in which the four main characters (Cartman, Kenny, Stan, and Kyle) get swept up in a Pocket Monster-inspired craze called Chinpokomon. In typical fashion, the situation escalates dramatically, as it turns out that the faux children’s property was a front to get kids to bomb Pearl Harbor.
There were also similarities between the Pokemon GO game and the episode that Parker pointed out – such as tracking the locations of the children – leading him to jokingly imply that their idea had been swiped, stating “I’m like ‘they ripped off our f-ing thing!'” Despite seemingly having no desire to resurrect Chinpokomon to lampoon the popular app, Parker and Stone have both been hard at work on another video game-centric project in South Park: The Fractured But Whole. That game is looking to be a successful followup to the pair’s previous Stick of Truth title, and there are sure to at least be a couple of references to Chinpokomon in that game for those anxious for more.
It’s hard to say if Parker and Stone will change their minds in the short term, but there’s currently no denying the power that Pokemon GO has on consumers – especially considering that the app single-handedly made Nintendo worth more than Sony.